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Halen's Rock Star Halloween Costume

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Halen's Rock Star Halloween Costume Instructions
Designed by Cheri Carlson

Transform your pet into a rock star this Halloween with this fun costume featuring a detachable guitar that connects to your pet's harness. An amiable boxer named Halen modeled this costume for our Halloween pet fashion show.

The Guitar
Step one:
To create this costume we purchased 1/4 inch balsa wood, 1/8 inch craft wood, screw-in eye hooks, Velcro and black roving wool. Find an image (within the public domain) you like of a guitar or better yet create one of your own and print two copies on photo paper in your desired size. We printed the neck and body of the guitar separately to get larger images. The body of our guitar is about 9 inches in length and the neck is about 11.5 inches in length. Glue the image of the neck to balsa wood and the image of the body to craft wood with Mod Podge or other craft adhesive. Using the second copy, cut out the raised parts of a guitar including; the bridge, bridge pickup, nut, jack and pick guard, and glue these images to balsa wood. Allow to dry. Use a jeweler's saw or other small coping saw, to cut out the images. Sand the edges until smooth.

Step two:
If we were to make this costume over again, we would coat the image of the guitar in Ice Resin to protect it and to give it some dimension. Test a small piece of your image first to make sure that the Ice Resin won't make the ink bleed. First, brush a thin layer of Ice Resin onto the neck and raised pieces, excluding the body. Allow time to cure. Glue the neck to the body of the guitar using E6000 glue. Allow to dry. Pour a layer of resin onto the body of the guitar and allow time to cure. Clean the edges if necessary. You may need to re-sand the edges smooth.

Step three:
Next, rig the wires to the bridge piece. Use a pin or small drill to poke six holes into the bridge piece for the strings. Use a small knife or tool to scoop out a recess into the back of the bridge behind the holes. For the first two strings, or low E and A, use 20-inch pieces of ZambaPro 49 .019 jewelry wire and string them through the holes before crimping them together behind the bridge using a sterling silver 2x2mm crimp tube. For help using crimp tools visit the handy tips section of the learning center. Leave a small tail on each wire. Repeat for the next two strings, this time using .014 jewelry wire, and then the last two using .012 jewelry wire. Press the crimped tails inside of the recess and fill the recess with Gem-Tac adhesive. Place a piece of paper over the recess and adhesive to hold in all the wires and make a flush surface. Allow time to dry. Glue the bridge and the rest of the raised pieces to the body of the guitar and allow time to dry.

Step four:
Use a pin to create six small grooves in the nut piece for the wires to run through. Dab the grooves with some glue and press the wires into the grooves, making sure the wires are taught. Place a small piece of plastic over the wires and let dry with a weighted object, such as a book, on top of the plastic. You may find it helpful to keep the jewelry wires pressed down at the point where they come out of the bridge while you glue the wires to the nut. Glue six 6mm metallite antique silver double hex beads in a vertical row alongside the tuners and allow to dry. Wrap the top wire around the lowest hex bead and secure with a crimp tube. Trim the excess wire. Repeat this process for the remaining five wires.

Step five:
To reinforce the guitar, glue a thin piece of wood that is nearly the length of the guitar to the back. We used a piece of dowel that was flattened on one side. Screw an eye hook into the bottom of the dowel so that the hook hangs over the edge. This will serve as the bottom hook for the shoulder strap. Glue a 1-inch piece of dowel to the top wing of the guitar for the top hook for the shoulder strap. Allow to dry. Screw in an eye hook so the hook hangs over the edge. Coat the back of the guitar and any uncoated surfaces in Mod Podge and let dry.

Step six:
Next, embellish the guitar. Glue a Swarovski SS16 rose flatback in black diamond to a blank 4.5mm sterling silver alphabet bead, covering the hole. Repeat twice. Glue these beads over the nut piece, covering the wires. Glue six Swarovski SS20 rose flatbacks in black diamond to form a row on the bridge piece. Glue several Swarovski SS9 rose flatbacks in black diamond onto the raised pieces to accent their designs. We used several of the following Swarovski flatbacks to accent the design on the body of our guitar: SS20 rose light Siam, SS12 rose light Siam, SS7 rose light Siam, SS30 rose light Siam, SS16 rose light Siam, SS20 rose jet, SS9 rose jet, SS12 rose jet, SS7 rose jet and SS7 rose crystal.

The Harness Rig
Halen's harness sits high on his back so in addition to attaching the guitar to the harness, we made a strap to wrap around his waist and provide the bottom ring to attach the guitar. In a later step we will attach two eye rings to the support piece on the back of the guitar which will connect to both the harness and the waist strap.

Step one:
Make a strap out of elastic (or another sturdy fabric such as an old nylon leash) that is long enough to wrap around your dog's waist and provide an overlap for the Velcro. Attach a piece of Velcro to each end for the closure. Sew a closed loop onto the strap, attach a split ring to the loop and then attach a lobster clasp to the split ring. Set aside

Step two:
Cut a piece of elastic string about 6 inches in length. The elastic allows the rig to give as the dog moves and sits. Fold the string in half and slide a sterling silver 3x3mm crimp tube over both ends. Slide the crimp tube up the elastic to form a loop that is about an inch long and crimp. Place a dab of E6000 glue to the ends of the elastic and insert them into a sterling silver crimp end with ring. Crimp the end with nylon jaw pliers and allow to dry. Attach a split ring to the crimp end ring and attach a cast clasp to the split ring. Thread a shoelace or ribbon through the loop on the elastic band. Tie the shoelace to your dog's harness. Put the Velcro waist band on your dog.

Step three:
Hold the guitar up to the harness and waistband, and make two marks on the dowel that coincide with the clasps. Screw eye hooks into the dowel at the marks. Now you can just clip the clasps onto the eye hooks on the guitar making it easy to get the guitar on and off of your dog.

The Guitar Strap
Next, construct the shoulder strap. You can use an old belt or elastic band from around the house. The shoulder strap is purely decorative and does not actually support the guitar.

Step one:
Cut the strap to loosely fit around your dog's shoulders. You want to allow a little extra room for your dog to sit down and move around. Sew a sterling silver 8.5x17mm cast clasp to each end of the strap.

Step two:
Embellish the strap with Swarovski flatbacks to spell the name of your dog; we used Swarovski rose flatbacks in light Siam. For the lightning bolt we used Swarovski rose flatbacks in crystal. We found it easier to glue the rhinestones to a piece of black fabric, trim around the design, and glue the design to the shoulder strap.

The Wig
Step one:
To create the mullet wig, cut a piece of fabric to fit on the top of your dog's head. We used a cup from a small sized bra and trimmed it down to size. Cut four pieces of ribbon to tie around your dog's neck; you can also use shoe laces. One strap goes in front of the ears and one strap goes behind the ears. Glue the ends of the ties onto the inside of the bra cup. Glue a piece of fabric to the inside of the bra cup to cover the tie ends

Step two:
Use hot glue to attach pieces of black roving wool, or yarn, to the cap to make the hair. We pulled small tufts of the wool and glued it on the cap in rows.

Be sure to check out our Halloween Dog Fashion Show Video to see all the fun our dogs had while wearing these costumes!
Estimated time: 3 hours (plus drying & sewing time)
Difficulty level: Beginner

Tools and Supplies Used:
ZambaPro 49 .012 30ft jewelry wire (ZP49-30F-012)
ZambaPro 49 .014 30ft jewelry wire (ZP49-30F-014)
ZambaPro 49 .019 30ft jewelry wire (ZP49-30F-019)
Gem-Tac permanent adhesive (GEMTAC)
Nipper tool (TOOL-101)
Jewel setter 2 pack (TOOL-170)
Knotting tweezers (TOOL-112)
Bead crimper tool (TOOL-100)
E6000 glue 1oz tube - medium/clear (E6000-01)
E6000 glue tip (E6000-TIP)
Split ring plier (TOOL-103)
List of Components:
Swarovski 2058 SS9 XILION rose flatback black diamond (2058-BKD9, qty 16)
Swarovski 2058 SS16 XILION rose flatback black diamond (2058-BKD16, qty 3)
Alphabet beads, sterling silver 4.5mm-blank (SS45-BLANK, qty 3)
Metallite 6mm antique silver double hex bead (M-BD0131, qty 6)
Sterling 2x2mm crimp tube (SS-CRM2, qty 6)
Swarovski 2058 SS12 XILION rose flatback jet (2058-JET12, qty 39)
Swarovski 2058 SS12 XILION rose flatback black diamond (2058-BKD12, qty 3)
Swarovski 2058 SS20 XILION rose flatback black diamond (2058-BKD20, qty 6)
Swarovski 2058 SS20 XILION rose flatback jet (2058-JET20, qty 8)
Swarovski 2058 SS9 XILION rose flatback jet (2058-JET9, qty 11)
Swarovski 2058 SS7 XILION rose flatback crystal (2058-CRY7, qty 63)
Swarovski 2058 SS7 XILION rose flatback jet (2058-JET7, qty 11)
Swarovski 2058 SS20 XILION rose flatback light Siam (2058-LSM20, qty 27)
Swarovski 2058 SS12 XILION rose flatback light Siam (2058-LSM12, qty 21)
Swarovski 2058 SS7 XILION rose flatback light Siam (2058-LSM7, qty 84)
Swarovski 2058 SS30 XILION rose flatback light Siam (2058-LSM30, qty 7)
Swarovski 2058 SS16 XILION rose flatback light Siam (2058-LSM16, qty 22)
Sterling silver 8.5x17mm cast clasp (SS-CL55, qty 3)
Swarovski 2058 SS9 XILION rose flatback light Siam (2058-LSM9, qty 2)
Sterling silver crimp end with ring - 2mm (SS-CREND03, qty 1)
Sterling silver 3 x 3mm crimp tube (SS-CRM5, qty 1)
8mm sterling silver split ring (SS-SR08, qty 1)
Swarovski 2058 SS16 XILION rose flatback jet (2058-JET16, qty 33)

Related Video

Watch video
Play Video
Dog Halloween Fashion Show Video

Purchase Idea Kit Components

Swarovski 2058 SS9 XILION Rose Enhanced Flatback Black Diamond
Code: 2058-BKD9
Diameter 2.5-2.7mm, Total Height 1mm 
1-7475-149150+
$0.08$0.07$0.06
Qty>
Swarovski 2058 SS12 XILION Rose Enhanced Flatback Black Diamond
Code: 2058-BKD12
Diameter 3-3.2mm, Total Height 1.5mm 
1-7475-149150+
$0.09$0.08$0.07
Qty>
Swarovski 2058 SS16 XILION Rose Enhanced Flatback Black Diamond
Code: 2058-BKD16
Diameter 3.8-4mm, Total Height 1.5mm 
1-5960-119120+
$0.11$0.10$0.09
Qty>
Swarovski 2058 SS20 XILION Rose Enhanced Flatback Black Diamond
Code: 2058-BKD20
Diameter 4.6-4.8mm, Total Height 2mm 
1-4950-99100+
$0.14$0.13$0.12
Qty>
Swarovski 2058 SS7 XILION Rose Enhanced Flatback Crystal
Code: 2058-CRY7
Diameter 2.1-2.3mm, Total Height 1mm 
1-7980-159160+
$0.07$0.06$0.05
Qty>
Swarovski 2058 SS7 XILION Rose Enhanced Flatback Jet
Code: 2058-JET7
Diameter 2.1-2.3mm, Total Height 1mm 
1-7475-149150+
$0.08$0.07$0.06
Qty>
Swarovski 2058 SS9 XILION Rose Enhanced Flatback Jet
Code: 2058-JET9
Diameter 2.5-2.7mm, Total Height 1mm 
1-7475-149150+
$0.08$0.07$0.06
Qty>
Swarovski 2058 SS12 XILION Rose Enhanced Flatback Jet
Code: 2058-JET12
Diameter 3-3.2mm, Total Height 1.5mm 
1-7475-149150+
$0.09$0.08$0.07
Qty>
Swarovski 2058 SS16 XILION Rose Enhanced Flatback Jet
Code: 2058-JET16
Diameter 3.8-4mm, Total Height 1.5mm 
1-5960-119120+
$0.11$0.10$0.09
Qty>
Swarovski 2058 SS20 XILION Rose Enhanced Flatback Jet
Code: 2058-JET20
Diameter 4.6-4.8mm, Total Height 2mm 
1-4950-99100+
$0.14$0.13$0.12
Qty>
Swarovski 2058 SS7 XILION Rose Enhanced Flatback Light Siam
Code: 2058-LSM7
Diameter 2.1-2.3mm, Total Height 1mm 
1-7475-149150+
$0.08$0.07$0.06
Qty>
Swarovski 2058 SS9 XILION Rose Enhanced Flatback Light Siam
Code: 2058-LSM9
Diameter 2.5-2.7mm, Total Height 1mm 
1-7475-149150+
$0.08$0.07$0.06
Qty>
Swarovski 2058 SS12 XILION Rose Enhanced Flatback Light Siam
Code: 2058-LSM12
Diameter 3-3.2mm, Total Height 1.5mm 
1-7475-149150+
$0.09$0.08$0.07
Qty>
Swarovski 2058 SS16 XILION Rose Enhanced Flatback Light Siam
Code: 2058-LSM16
Diameter 3.8-4mm, Total Height 1.5mm 
1-5960-119120+
$0.11$0.10$0.09
Qty>
Swarovski 2058 SS20 XILION Rose Enhanced Flatback Light Siam
Code: 2058-LSM20
Diameter 4.6-4.8mm, Total Height 2mm 
1-4950-99100+
$0.14$0.13$0.12
Qty>
Swarovski 2058 SS30 XILION Rose Enhanced Flatback Light Siam
Code: 2058-LSM30
Diameter 6.32-6.5mm, Total Height 2.5mm 
1-2930-5960+
$0.27$0.25$0.22
Qty>
Alphabet Beads, Sterling Silver 4.5mm - Blank
Code: SS45-BLANK
Length 4.5mm 
Price: $1.98
Qty>
Sterling Silver 8.5x17mm Cast Clasp
Code: SS-CL55
Length 17mm, Width 8.5mm 
1-23-56+
$7.64$7.10$6.61
Qty>
JBB 2mm Sterling Silver Crimp End Cap with Loop
Code: SS-CREND03
Length 11.5mm 
1-56-1112+
$2.42$2.24$2.07
Qty>
Sterling Silver 2 x 2mm Crimp Tube
Code: SS-CRM2
Length 2mm, Width 2mm 
1-4950-99100+
$0.15$0.14$0.13
Qty>
Sterling Silver 3 x 3mm Crimp Tube
Code: SS-CRM5
Length 3mm, Width 3mm 
1-2425-4950+
$0.36$0.33$0.30
Qty>
8mm Sterling Silver Split Ring
Code: SS-SR08
Diameter 8mm 
1-910-1920+
$1.43$1.32$1.22
Qty>

Alternate Components

Swarovski 17704 SS29 XILION Silver-Plated Setting 2-Holes Jet
Code: 17704SH2-JET29
Length 6.5mm, Width 6.5mm, Depth 5.5-6mm 
1-1415-2930+
$0.72$0.66$0.60
Qty>

Purchase Tools & Supplies

ZambaPro® Jewelry Wire, 49-Strand .012 30-Feet (9.1 Meters)
Code: ZP49-30F-012
Diameter .012 inches, Length 30 feet 
1-12-34+
$18.59$17.40$16.29
Qty>
Gem-Tac Permanent Adhesive 3.7 fl oz.
Code: GEMTAC
3.7 fl oz 
1-23-56+
$14.35$13.37$12.46
Qty>
Nipper Tool
Code: TOOL-101
Price: $8.04
Qty>
The Beadsmith Jewel Setter 2 pack
Code: TOOL-170
Price: $2.48
Qty>
Knotting Tweezers
Code: TOOL-112
4.5 Inches 
Price: $4.28
Qty>
Bead Crimper Tool
Code: TOOL-100
Length 5 1/8-Inch 
Price: $13.43
Qty>
Split Ring Plier
Code: TOOL-103
Price: $8.70
Qty>
E6000 Glue 1oz Tube - Medium/Clear
Code: E6000-01
1oz 
Price: $2.99
Qty>
E6000 Glue Tip
Code: E6000-TIP
Price: $0.69
Qty>



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